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“Beautiful Spring Adventure” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Safari West

Safari West
3115 Porter Creek Rd., Santa Rosa, CA 95404
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Ranked #5 of 64 Activities in Santa Rosa
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Adventure
Activities: Group tours/safari, Viewing wildlife
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Attraction details
Owner description: Escape to Africa by way of Sonoma County…Come discover the Sonoma Serengeti. The classic African safari is a trip of a lifetime for intrepid travelers from around the globe - and, it is closer than you think! The entire Safari West experience is a kid-friendly adventure for families to enjoy together. Our tours are designed to educate guests of all ages and we have found that families are truly inspired as they learn from and share with one another. At Safari West we strive to actively promote conservation and environmental education concepts to our guests, whether they are with us for an hour or a week. The whole experience at Safari West is one of building connections and making discoveries; getting back to basics and enjoying the profound simple pleasures of family and nature that are all too often overlooked. If anything is “not to be missed,” it is that sense of serenity one finds while gazing at graceful giraffe nuzzling her newborn or the surge of raw adventure while witnessing an energetic herd of wildebeest galloping across the horizon. Overnight lodging is also available - the true 'glamping' experience!
Windsor, California
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Beautiful Spring Adventure”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2014

What a wonderful day we spent at the Safari West in Santa Rosa CA. This place is probably around 5 miles from our house yet we had never been there until this trip - why did we wait so long, I've asked myself.

The day we were there we had the amazing experience of seeing the birth of a brand new "baby" antelope (sorry don't remember the species) and the protective dominate male working with the baby to get it up on its feet while protecting it from all the interested females and males of the herd. The male would nudge the tiny white baby laying on the ground until it tried to raise itself on its feet, then the large male would use his legs - one on the right then one on the left - to guide the baby to stand and keep steady. Never had we seen this kind of behavior before. Amazing. In the same gated area, the antelopes shared the space with the giraffes - a one month old baby was quietly standing by itself observing all the adult giraffes and other antelopes. A large male giraffe came right up to the power wagon we were riding on, you could have touched him.

Then off to see the white rhinos, zebras (another baby born a few weeks before our trip), ostriches and the water buffalo. Our driver didn't get out of the power wagon in the water buffalo area as he said if he did they would probably attack - such huge beasts all sitting chewing their cud and watching us sitting in the power wagon in unison - made you think you could understand their collective powerful mind set.

The ride around the property is very interesting (bumpy and dusty) and our driver/guide was very informative. There is a large aviary near the entrance that the driver walked us through, protecting us from an aggressive bird or two. There was a leopard lying in his grassy enclosure, monkeys in treed enclosures, etc.

It was the last week of school so there were groups of children having field trips, but it didn't seem crowded at all. Our only disappointment was we had made reservations to have their BBQ lunch prior to our tour time but it was cancelled due to lack of attendees. Unfortunately we had not checked our messages and didn't know this, so we had arrived hungry. Our disappointment faded, however, when we ordered a delicious sandwich at the snack bar located near the boarding area.

Highly recommend this experience to anyone who loves nature and the outdoors. Bring sunglasses, sunscreen and a hat in case you get to sit outside on the top of the power wagon. Wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes as you need to climb into the power wagon. A GREAT place to take your kids for an amazing day!

Visited May 2014
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400 reviews from our community

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English first
Irvine, California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Great African Adventure”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

We thoroughly enjoyed our experience at Safari West. We spent the nigh in a luxury Tent/Cabin! I highly recommend doing this!
Giraffes were right outside! We got a cabin close to 'the center' which I would recommend if you have any walking issues. The other tent/cabins are a distance apart, remote, but there is a walk to the restaurant, and the center of activities. They deliver you and your luggage from the parking lot to your glam tent by jeep. So you don't have to worry about carrying your things. Prepare yourself - There is almost no cell service. For a day or 2 it's ok. There is wifi in the dining room. The tour was interesting. a little chilly and bumpy - but fun and educational. Dinner was a BBQ - great. And you can spend a lot of your day walking around and seeing all of their exotic, well-cared for animals.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fremont, California, USA
18 reviews 18 reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2014

We just did the tour yesterday and according to my 9 year old, it was "the best ever!" Went with 2 other families and in all there were 6 adults and 5 children (ages ranging from 3 - 9.) Everyone (adults & kids) all agreed that it was awesome. A tour is only as good as the guide and our guide, JEFF is exceptional. He spoke with the adults and children in a way that made it fun and educational at the same time. So much information --- he knows his stuff! There were lots of questions from our kids and he was always patient and listened and answered each one. He engaged the kids with questions of his own and they were always so excited to answer for him.

The animals are beautiful and there were lots to see. Getting up close and personal made the experience all the more authentic. Safari West is a must do when visiting Northern California. I only wish we would have spent a night in the tents. We will definitely be going back.


If visiting in the summer months, do an early tour (we did the 9:00AM (first) tour). It was early enough before the heat set in.

Do the walking portion of the tour first then the jeep ride. Since we had a group of 11 people, we had the jeep all to ourselves. The kids loved riding on the very top of the jeep.

Pack a lunch. We packed sandwiches, drinks and snacks and left them in the car during the tour. When the tour was over, we got our food and had lunch while we watched the flamingos and giraffes. It was so cool!

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Great tour!! Wish we would have stayed a night here.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2014

We drove by & just decided to stop. So much fun!! Our teenagers loved it. So cool today at the California science academy museum to see stuffed animals that we saw in the flesh the other day at safari west.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
124 reviews 124 reviews
56 attraction reviews
Reviews in 83 cities Reviews in 83 cities
104 helpful votes 104 helpful votes
“Excellent - One of Kind Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2014

What a lovely surprise we stumbled upon while planning out trip in California.

I found Safari West actually on Trip Advisor when looking for things to do in Santa Rosa. We were so fortunate to have been able to plan this adventure.

We arrived in the afternoon and were greeted by a gentleman who drove us in a jeep to our private authentic African tent. How neat! The tent had a wood floor, full closure panels, a flushing toilet and real shower. We couldn't believe it...and to top it all off, had a King bed that was so comfortable!

After settling in, the gentlemen gave us a couple bottles of water and ice in a cooler on the front porch. Then, we were sent off to explore. They have many cages and enclosure of animals on the property that look very well kept and maintained.

They have different kinds of monkeys, cheetah's, Foxes, Tortoises, Servals, Flamingo's, and Lemur's that you can go visit whenever you like.

Around 6:30 p.m., the staff places various appetizers such as tomatoes and mozzarella, sausages, fruits, etc, Then, comes dinner that is cooked on an open pit BBQ of Chicken and Pork Roast, asparagus, potatoes, salad, soup, bread and strawberry shortcake for dessert.

Sleeping was extremely comfortable in the bed with many feather beds, electric blankets and space heater in the room. However, the temperature outdoors was around 80-90 degrees. But, during the night, the temperature dropped quickly, and by morning we woke to a chilly, but brisk temperature of around 42 degrees. (We camped a lot and enjoyed waking up refreshed on a chilly morning, so we did not use the electric blankets or space heater).

In the morning, we had a Continental Breakfast around 8 am in their Snack house that was basically cereal, oatmeal, bagels, OJ and hot chocolate.

Our tour began at 9 a.m. of the Safari and started off at the cages and pens we visited and we had first hand view and our tour guide explain each animal and how they came to obtain them. We then were permitted to walk in the actual aviary and were followed along by the cutest bird (sorry, can't remember what it was)...but it acted like a child and followed us the whole time.

Next, we headed off on our Safari Ride in a jeep type vehicle where someone could sit on top and enjoy the close up views of some of the animals. We saw a lot of zebra's, rhinocerous, and a lot of other animals in their natural setting. What a wonderful experience!

The entire adventure was worth every cent!!!! I would love to go back sometime and do it all over again.

There is a small bar when you can purchase beer/wine and snacks.

Tips I can give: Shower at night when it is warmer and keep the bathroom door closed in your tent. Otherwise it will get very chilly inside the tent because of the open top in the bathroom area.

If you get tent # 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20, 18, or 19, you will have an excellent view of the Safari and the Giraffe, Antelope, etc.

At night some of the animals get very vocal and LOUD! If the noises bother you, be sure and bring ear plugs.

It is also very dusty, so be sure and bring a change of clothes.

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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